When asked what brought them to EBCH….
My son (4 at the time) and I fled another state due to domestic violence. I gave everything away and we boarded the train with 2 suitcases. . I no longer wake up wondering if this will be that day that “he: finally kills me, and without the gut-wrenching nausea of trying to figure out how I’m going to pay the rent. I’ve been given the gift of Hope and I cherish that. Thank you East Bay Coalition for the Homeless! At first I felt like a stranger in a strange land, but now I know this is our home.
When my husband and I split, I was unable to afford our apartment alone. I ended up going to a family shelter. I had a case worker who worked with me daily and they referred me to EBCH. I had been evicted for the inability to pay my rent. It was my first time being homeless. I am grateful for the support, stability for my children and peace of mind that EBCH has given me.
…I was living in a very rural area, and walked 7 miles to work everyday and still did not have enough to pay my rent. I was evicted and could not save enough for first month rent and security. I ended up in emergency shelter. Now, in an EBCH apartment, I am on a bus line, able to work more hours and able to support my family.
When asked how has their situation improved…
I no longer live in a shelter. It is difficult because I am comfortable and I do not want to have to move again. Starting over is hard. This has given me stability and confidence that my family will be ok…
One of the best parts is that the apartments are in regular communities without the slightest indication that it’s transitional housing. They are not located in the worst parts of town. Its easy to assimilate into the community without the stigma of “homeless” I have the very fortunate experience of being located in Bristol, which I feel is the prettiest place on the planet. Because of this program, I am able to look for an apartment I can afford on my own. I already know that I will remain in this community when I leave the program.
When asked what advice they would give to a family moving into the program…
You have been given a blessing by being able to start again. Your EBCH team is there to encourage you. At the same time, they won’t babysit you. You have to want this for yourself and your family. The rent and rules are very do-able. They already believe in you. So just do it. You’ll be glad you did.
Use your time to take care of yourself and find out who you are and what you can really do to improve your situation. Do what you have to do and you will have no problems. People will help you if they see you are doing what you’re supposed to be doing. Work hard at improving your life.